If you have been accused of a dwi and been charged with a crime, our dwi lawyer in Austin, TX can help you. If you have a dwi charge you should not wait or hesitate to work with an experienced dwi lawyer. Texas has very strict laws on dwi charges and having a dedicated lawyer on your side can help you fight for your rights. Long gone are the days when the penalty was a mere inconvenience. Fines, licenses suspension, surcharges, DWI school, mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device (IID), and jail could await you even if you have never before been convicted of drunk driving. Our dwi charge attorney gives each client the time and attention they deserve to ensure that there is less on your shoulders. This can be a stressful time and we are here to help.
At the Law Office of Matthew Shrum, we are dedicated to protecting the rights of our clients. Matthew Shrum is an experienced DWI attorney who will fight for you every step of the way. For a free consultation you can email us or call us today at (512) 777-0000.
What is a DWI in Austin Texas?
The law defining the basic offense of driving while intoxicated is section 49.04 of the Texas Penal Code. The statute says that if you operate a motor vehicle in a public place while intoxicated, you have committed an offense. The language may appear simple, but it really does not tell you very much about what the law really means, most importantly what it means to be intoxicated. In order to understand the answer to that question, you need to refer to the definitions contained in PC 49.01. In that section, “intoxication” is defined in distinct ways:
- Having an alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher;
- Not having the normal use of your physical faculties due to having alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two, in your body; or
- Not having the normal use of your mental faculties due to having alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two, in your body.
If you have been arrested for DWI, you want a dwi attorney in Austin who understands how the prosecution will try to prove intoxication, and all the defenses that may be available in order to counter the charges against you. Your Austin DWI lawyer should also provide you with a fair and honest assessment of the case against you, and the potential consequences if you are convicted.
Penalties You Can Face if Charged with DWI in Austin, TX
Being aware that you are facing a DWI charge is only a part of understanding your situation. There are many possible variations in the classifications and penalties in a DWI case, and they can affect both the seriousness of the charge, and the risks if you are convicted:
First Offense DWI
If this is your first DWI, the offense is generally a class B misdemeanor. Your license can be suspended for up to a year. You can also face a fine of $2,000, up to six months in jail (with a minimum of 72 hours confinement), a DWI education program, and the possibility of mandatory installation of an IID. When it’s time to get your license back, you’ll have to pay a license restoration fee, and your insurance rates will be sky-high.
Second Offense DWI
This is a class A misdemeanor. A conviction can carry a potential fine of up to $4,000, up to a year in jail (minimum 30 days), plus DWI education, IID (if ordered by the judge), and other monetary consequences.
Third or Repeat DWI Offender
This is a third degree felony. In addition to the other DWI penalties, the fine could be as high as $10,000, your license can be suspended for up to two years, and your prison sentence could be from 2 to 10 years.
Additional sentencing enhancements may also be imposed where the charge is DWI with a BAC of 0.15 or more (class A misdemeanor), and DWI with an open container of alcohol in your immediate possession (minimum confinement of 6 days).
DWI – Related Offenses in Travis County
There are other drunk and drugged driving charges and enhancements that may apply in certain circumstances. These include:
- DWI with child passenger
- Intoxication assault
- Intoxication manslaughter
All of these offenses are felonies, and each carries serious penalties if you are convicted. Also, in the state of Texas, there is a difference between a dwi and a dui charge.
More Intoxicated-Related Charges in Texas
When you are under the influence of alcohol, you do not only get in trouble when you get behind the wheel but you can also get in trouble if you cause problems in public. Here are some related offenses:
- Public intoxication
- Possession of alcohol in a vehicle
- Flying while intoxicated
- Boating (operating a watercraft) while intoxicated
- Operating (or assembling) an amusement ride while intoxicated
Work with an Experienced DWI Defense Attorney in Austin TX
Being charged with drunk driving, or with another intoxication-related offense, can lead to life-altering consequences. That’s why it is so important to choose the right attorney to defend you. Defenses do exist in these cases, including illegal stops, illegal search and seizure, faulty breath tests, and invalid field sobriety tests, among others.
If you have been charged with DWI, we can help. Contact the Law Office of Matthew Shrum today for a free consultation.
Texas DWI Offenses
Being convicted of a DWI in Austin, TX puts your reputation, career and freedom at risk. You may even have trouble finding housing due to your criminal record. Here are some statistics to know about driving while intoxicated:
- Driving while intoxicated costs the U.S. billions of dollars each year
- About 29 people die due to impaired driving every day in the U.S.
- Around 30% of driving fatalities are caused by intoxicated drivers
- A person is injured nearly every 90 seconds due to intoxicated drivers
- One in three intoxicated drivers will be involved in a crash
Speak with a DWI lawyer in Austin Today. Our Travis County DWI attorney will fight for your rights!
If you have been charged with drinking while intoxicated in Austin then contact us today. Our experienced and dedicated dwi lawyer will work with you to ensure you are able to make it through this process. Our team will handle all of the hard work and try to make this as easy as possible for you. Texas can have some severe penalties for drug charges so do not hesitate to contact our criminal defense attorney in Austin.